October 11, 2007 03:41:22am
Re: They'll Never Get the Message.
I remember 15 years ago, when the supermarkets had cereal boxes that were shrinkwrapped.
Inside the clear wrapping, attached to the boxes of (in this case) Addams Family Cereal were 1 of 4 different little flashlights,
in the shape of a hand (Thing), Cousin It, Lurch, or Uncle Fester.
Then, a sticker on the shrinkwrap had the word "Free" in big letters along with "reusable flashlight - Collect all 4"
I know because I still have a set of unopened boxes.
Well, at the big Cala supermarket at California near Van Ness Avenue, a lot of the shrinkwrap had been torn open and the flashlights taken, presumably by shoppers who were tempted by the cool premium, perhaps feeling justified by the word "free".
Just as I pondered the razzled shelf of rifled packages, I overheard a fracus going on between an irate lady with a full shopping cart and the store manager over one of the flashlights she insisted was "free".
She refused to see it their way, and was subsequently asked to leave, without getting to purchase all the stuff she had in the cart.
Maybe she and others remember when candy bars were a nickel, and Craker-Jacks had little plastic and even tin toys years ago instead of paper prizes like they do now.
But then, babies started swallowing them, and lawsuits changed what could be put in a box for free.
The flashlights were too big to swallow, but you rarely see any premiums shrinkwrapped to the boxes with a sticker that says "Free" anymore.
Of course, Americans and people all over - have come to expect a lot for as little as possible, living on borrowed credit, spending as little as possible on cheaply made goods rather than spend more for better goods.
They will spend 2 hours figuring a way to not have to spend a dollar.
I understand that. My Great Grandmother would take me when I was 5 miles and miles out of her way to shop in some cruddy little rumage shop for old dishes and what not, and she would sometimes erase the price off an item and pencil in a much cheaper amount.
Save two bits or something.
It's the psychology of it.
There's no real future in it, altho when the geeks are 80 years old they'll have lots of stories to tell about how they used to download music for free!